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Bill advocating national popular vote draws support, criticism in Michigan

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(The Center Square) – A proposed bill could change the way Michigan votes for president.

House Bill 4156 would enter Michigan into the National Popular Vote Compact, an agreement among participating states to elect the president by national popular vote.

This means Michigan, as well as all other compact member states, would pledge to allocate all of its electoral votes to whichever presidential candidate receives the greatest number of votes nationwide, rather than statewide popular vote.

The bill has garnered both fierce opposition and strong support across party lines.

“House Bill 4156 is a dangerous proposal that disenfranchises Michigan voters,” Rep. Ann Bollin, R-Brighton Township, said. “The Electoral College ensures presidential candidates campaign across a variety of states, addressing unique regional concerns. Michigan’s urban, suburban, and rural communities deserve to have their voices heard. This legislation would drown out those voices in favor of larger states with massive population centers.”

Pure Integrity for Michigan Elections also opposes the bill, saying “Michigan’s voters would be completely ignored if they don’t happen to vote for the same president as 51% of the country…This bill looks to undo the sovereignty of the state of Michigan by ignoring its voters and selecting instead someone as president that the large cities in the country would choose.”

Gary Wolfram with the Conservatives for National Popular Vote testified in support of the bill.

“It is a compact among the states meant to overcome the shortcomings of the winner-take-all method adopted by all of the states except Maine and Nebraska to decide how their electors will vote within the Electoral College…[currently] presidential campaigns are not national campaigns. One can honestly say that we elect a president of the Battleground States of America, not a president of the United States of America,” he said.

If HB 4156 passes, at least 50 more electoral votes are needed for the NPV Compact to take effect.

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